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The Family Bandwagon

Our family is spread out across the country and across the world, and what better way to keep in touch than a collaborative digital journal?

Monday, 22 December 2008

Guess the time and date (and eye colour) competition

As discussed, I'm going to run a competition to guess the time (to the nearest hour) and date of the baby's birth, and the eye colour. That means if someone has the same time that you want, you have to go a different eye colour :) The winner will be the closest time first, and if there's two times that are close then whoever gets the eyes right.
I'll put it up here for a day or so for you all to guess, and then I'm going to post it on my website and keep a running tally of guesses up there :)
The expected due date is Feb 1. Both Cheryl and I have brown eyes, but both our Dads have blue eyes. Oh, and there is a prize (it'll probably be one of my tees from redbubble.. it wont be naming the baby, sorry Jared)
Good luck! ;)

Saturday, 20 December 2008

Happy Birthday, Lisa!!

I hope you have a wonderful day. Make sure you get some photos of you & your sibs while they're all there!

Lots of Love, Cheryl & baby

Happy Birthday, Carolynn!! :D

I hope you enjoy your party today! (if the weather is anything like it is here, it'll be a beautiful day for you :)

Lots of Love, Cheryl & your cousin-to-be

Sunday, 7 December 2008

Happy birthday to Danielle!
Lots of love from all of us here in Eaglehawk.
Hope you have a fun day.
See you soon.

Saturday, 29 November 2008

The Piano-ator -- "I'll be Bach!"

(I wanted to call home this morning, but got up too late - don't think you'd appreciate a phone ringing at 10:30pm, just when you're settling in for bed. I'll try again tonight (Sunday morning).)

I have a piano! It is teh awesome.

P291108_12.20.JPGDee got it from an online place for my birthday. It's a Korg SP-250 (stage piano), digital, full size and with that fancy-pant hammer-action that makes it feel like a "real" (analogue?) piano. So. Very. Cool. It arrived yesterday, and it was all I could do not to fob off work and come home for it!

P291108_12.22[01].JPGLast weekend we visited London's "Tin Pan Alley", the music-strip in the West End. We found the piano there, but for about an extra £100 -- no thanks! So for £50 cheaper we got the piano and a stool from DV247. Not bad at all, especially since we had to wait less than a week for it to arrive!

Funny: the evening after visiting Tin Pan Alley we went to a Jazz night at the 100 Club on Oxford Street ... and the pianist had the same piano! Very cool -- before Saturday I'd only seen it in pictures, then over the course of a day I got to play with one (in the store) and listen to someone hammering out frenetic melodies and slammin' chords, as we danced and jived (unlicensed, of course) in any free floor-space.

The weekend before that, you may know, we spent in the Cotswolds -- picturesque English countryside, tawny rough-hewn stone for walls, houses, people (okay, the people weren't made of stone, but wouldn't that be cool!). We stayed in Bourton On The Water; Dee tricked me because I thought we were going to drink bourbon on the water! Still, getting away for a relaxing weekend was probably better. Probably.

The town itself is billed as "the Venice of England", but the locals didn't take too kindly to me tying a bunch of ducks together in the shape of a gondala and paddling along the little waterway that twisted through the township. The ducks didn't mind, and gave me lots of little friendship-bites to show how much they respected and admired me.

The countdown is well and truly on now -- we both can't wait to get home and see everyone, and eat decent fish and chips, and feel sunlight, and drink cold beer.

Nursery update

Hey everybody.. today we bought a change table, finally. Cheryl is going to get a capsule for the car in January, after she finishes work, and then I think we have all the essentials. Somewhere for the baby to sleep, be changed, and a way to get him around :)

We also bought a really cool cot set, with monkeys and turtles and all that good stuff. We put it in the cot just to take some photos to put online.

You can see all the nursery photos here.

Oh, we also had a very kind woman in Toys R Us give us a voucher which saved us about $40 (after the change table had already been reduced by $100 i might add). She was just another shopper there, and being nice.. some people are awesome :)

Saturday we also had the first of our three classes at Flinders Hospital. The second is with a Physio, and covers relaxation techniques and pain relief, and the third is about taking the baby home and looking after it.. Which unfortunately meant that this one was about labour and delivery.

I wont go into specifics.. but rest assured, they did ;)

Still, it was really good, and it's left both Cheryl and I feeling better about the whole thing. There were a few things that I had heard, or read in older books, which were completely wrong. Which is good.

And that's about it from us for this week.

Friday, 28 November 2008

christmas is coming

Looking forward to seeing you all soon. Dad's next appointment is next Tuesday in Bendigo where we hope to find out what treatment is recommended and when. He has gained an extra kilo (73) but still has problems with some foods. Otherwise all is well and we're keeping on keeping on. Carolynn called today on her way to confirmation class. Tamara rang since she is organised enough to be buying a present for Carolynn. I'll consult with Dayna when she gets here. Maybe we can buy a joint gift. Lisa said there is a google diary with itinaries for our overseas visitors. I've asked her to send it to me. I'm just sorting what I have to buy for whom. Is it December already? I'm not ready!

Sunday, 23 November 2008


Guess what? I won the Perpetual Trophy at the concert last night. The perpetual is like a great team member award. At the concert Nana, Daria and Poppy won prizes in the raffle (Nana won 2 prizes :P ).
Pictured left 2 right: the club Perpetual trophy and my Perpetual trophy.

Friday, 21 November 2008

Confirmation, Calisthenics and School

I thought it was about tie for me to update the bandwagon. Today is my confirmation class. Well this Saturday is my end of year concert. On the 5th of December I have the Fashion Awards and then on the 7th I get confirmed. I also have the last of my exams next week between Monday and Wednesday.

Sunday, 16 November 2008

Our weekend

This weekend I surprised Damien with a stay at a Bed &Breakfast in a little town called Macclesfield. I thought it would be nice to get away from baby preparations, house work and the temptation for Damien to do any work on the computer. I also wanted to have at least one more weekend away together before the baby arrives (10 weeks to go!). It was a bit difficult to keep it a total secret... especially on Saturday when I asked which pyjamas he'd like to take on our "mystery trip" :)

The B&B was a nice little studio attached to a larger house, all set on a huge country property complete with two dogs, two alpacas and a sheep. The owners had set the studio up beautifully and had left for us plenty of breakfast provisions as well as lots of yummy snacks (chocolate, biscuits... yum!). We went for a little walk in the afternoon, and then went out for dinner at traditional English-style pub, The Three Brother's Arms. Once again, yum!! The food was really nice, and the pub itself was really nicely decorated. It even had a well in it!
This morning we did a bit of lazing around before heading off. It was so nice to wake up and feel like we were on a holiday!
Damien has put some photos up here.(There's also the latest "belly watch" photo there)

Sunday, 9 November 2008

Decorating and cleaning

Hey all,

We finally got the rest of the decorations for the baby's room this week. It's a collection of vinyl stickers of birds in flight.. we stuck them up this weekend on the main blue wall. I've put some pictures up on flickr so you can have a look.. although they were pretty tricky to photograph, so the wall is a different colour in each shot. It should give a fair idea of how it looks though.

Today we hired a carpet cleaner and picked up quite a collection of sludge from our carpets.. we mainly wanted to do the baby's room and the lounge, but we had a bit of time so got some other areas cleaned as well. It's very rewarding to look at the disturbing brown gunk in the bottom of the machine and know that at least now it's not in the carpets any more :)

That's about it from us for this weekend.. now we're off to a much deserved dinner at a Japanese restaurant on the beach. Huzzah! Cheryl has planned something secret for next weekend that doesn't involve cleaning or looking at baby furniture, so it should be a refreshing change.. I don't know what it is though. Should be fun :)

Wednesday, 29 October 2008

My brush with fame

Vicki and I just spent a fun evening being cultured - we decided to attend Literature Live with Neil Gaiman. He's in the UK to promote his new book, The Graveyard Book.

After being introduced, Neil highlighted a dilemma that many people may have had - Jonathan Coulton and Paul and Storm had a gig next door at the same time as Neil's talk. To ensure we didn't miss out (and become bitter and twisted in our old age), he invited them to perform the shortest gig ever! Neil Gaiman had his own 'warm up bands'!

The evening started with Paul and Storm singing Live - a song about building the perfect woman - Frankenstein-style: "Hard work and science are what I have to give, and all I'm asking in return is that you live.."

This was followed by Jonathan Coulton who sang a very catchy tune Skullcrusher Mountain: "I’m so into you
But I’m way too smart for you
Even my henchmen think I’m crazy
I’m not surprised that you agree
If you could find some way to be
A little bit less afraid of me
You’d see the voices that control me from inside my head
Say I shouldn’t kill you yet"

Finally Neil read some of the book to us (Chapter 3) - he even used the right voices! The father sounds like Berk from Trapdoor (you know, the plasticine dude on tv). After the reading, there was a question and answer session - Neil's answers were honest and amusing and not arrogant. It makes me even happier to read his books. He even answered the silly girl who obviously didn't know much about him and asked the question he's probably answered millions of times already.."I've been reading American Gods...(insert list of books), why do you choose to incorporate fantasy..?" (or something like this). My favourite Q&A was "What do you think of your Sandman being used by boys to get the girlfriends in to comics?".. "I'm happy to have one of the first sexually transmitted comics!"

Anyway, there were book signings afterwards, so I had to get my new copy of the Graveyard Book signed. :-) I even got a photo (in the typical dayna-selfportrait style). He was great about it too - just told me that the signature in the book will be slightly wobbly because he couldn't see (due to the flash - it IS bright).

And now I've updated the Bandwagon within 2 hrs of getting home - this is a new record for me! An event with photos up on the same day!! woohoo! (Can you tell I'm excited by my brush with fame?)

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

wow what a surprise!!!

well I won a scholarship in English...$1,000 to spend on anything to do with English so I've decided to buy a new laptop.

Monday, 27 October 2008

BellyWatch: Week 27

This weekend Cheryl officially entered her third trimester. We took some photos. It may look like she's really pushing her stomach out, but that's just how her back is.

So I guess we're officially in count-down mode now.. it's no longer "27 weeks in", now it's "13 weeks left". We've still got a fair bit to do - the most pressing of which is to organise a car seat from the RAA, or we wont be able to take the baby home. But apart from that we have supplies to buy, not to mention furniture.. we've ordered a cot, but we've still got to find a little chest of drawers or bookshelf or something to put a change-table on top of.. and of course the change table itself.

Such fun :) Time for a trip to Ikea methinks.

We did buy a pram on the weekend. A friend was recommending the brand when they found one on eBay that was actually being sold in Adelaide. I sent a message through to the seller saying we'd like to have a look, and she gave me a call - turns out she lives about 5 minutes away from us.

So we headed over there for a bit of a look, had a practice pushing it around, opening and closing it to make sure it was all easy enough, and then bought it from her straight away. It's a nice little pram, a Peg Perego Pliko P3.. they retail for around $600 - $700.. I was a bit taken aback with the cost of prams to be honest... But yeah, second-hand we got a good deal. It obviously sits back for a baby as well as being upright for a toddler, and our friends said theirs has lasted several years.

Cheryl took another video while I was at Iaido on Sunday, this one is even freakier than the last. Check it out at my website

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

Time 4 me to update!!!!

Hi everyone, well on friday 2 weeks ago i got an email from one the editors from 'The LOOP' which is part of the 'Addy'. She wanted me to write some articals for her, so i did...Yay so now i have a part-time job.
I also have an assignment to do on Lodon so if you have any good spots that you think other people might like let me know.

Saturday, 18 October 2008

Delightful deception

surprise!As you all know, Dee threw Glenn a surprise 30th birthday party last weekend. I was in on it from the start and Glenn didn't suspect a thing!

I went to London last Thursday - I had my end of year appraisal on Friday, so I checked that I could stay over with G&D. This wasn't unusual, I'd popped down to London for work before and Glenn is used to me staying over. What he didn't know was that I'd requested my appraisal for Friday so that I could be there for the weekend. heheheh...

I'd been in London a few weeks ago to see Toby - an Aussie who was only in the UK for a few days. We'd gone to Camden Market and I'd spied some cool Xmas pressies for you lot. I decided Saturday would be a good day to go get them (since I'm away all of November) and Glenn agreed to come along (as we were hoping). We headed off around lunch time. Dee had gone to "get Glenn's present" - she was really getting things organised for the party.

Once we were out of the way, Dee, Tina, Chris and Colleen got to work making the party-house - helium balloons, nibbles, all the important things. Glenn and I had a fab time wandering around the market, buying presents (I even got Glenn's pressies while we were out), eating tasty curries and looking at lots of interesting things. Eventually, we headed back towards the flat, stopping at St Pancras station for 'high tea'. Yes, we had an English tea (tea and scones) in a French cafe for an Aussie birthday. How multicultural. While we were eating, I got a call from Dee that it was all set to go - Glenn didn't even question why I got the call and not him (we said his phone had no reception - he didn't even check..heheh.. trusting brother).

Family resemblanceWe made it back and "Surprise"!!

I missed out on the birthday cake cos I had to go and get Bruce from the train station - he had his appraisal on Monday, so he came and stayed at G&D's too. It was a fun night - there are MANY photos here. It seemed like Glenn had a good time, made better by the surprise. Yay us for not letting him know. *grin*

HeatedOn Sunday, after a pancake breakfast, Bruce and I went to the Science Museum - we like to play with all the hands-on exhibits. I had fun taking photos of the thermal imaging camera. :-) The weekend passed far too quickly and on Monday Bruce headed to work and I caught the train back to Manchester.

This weekend, I'm staying at home - it seems like ages since I've done that for one reason or another. Tomorrow morning I'm catching up with Vicki, Steven, Angelika and James for brunch and Killer Bunnies. Then tomorrow afternoon I head over to Wirral where I'll be working for most of next week. *phew* I'm looking forward to having a holiday!

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Wednesday, 8 October 2008

Happy Birthday Dad!

HAPPY 60th!!!

Hope you've had a splendid day.
(with lots of unlicensed dancing)

Lots of love and hugz

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

MST3K and the Sci-Fi London Oktoberfest

This weekend I attended an all-night film festival for the Sci-fi London Oktoberfest -- about 10 hours of icecream, red-bull and the hilarity of Mystery Science Theatre 3000 (MST3K). On the programme it's listed as "Seriously funny {stuff}!", and it really was.

I arrived at the Odeon West End (near Picadilly Circus) at about 23:15 ... and then found out I was in the wrong place! Not sure how that happened, but suddenly the benefit of having Google Maps on a phone became very apparent -- even I could find my way, despite both my own lack of a directional sense and London's winding, Celtic roads.

So I wasn't too late. I met Allen "Conky" there; he gave me my (half-price) ticket and we wandered into the cinema.

Extremely comfy chairs! Free tea, coffee, icecream and red-bull! A couple of guys from EA (the games company) showing off their new XBOX 360 game (and a guy dressed up as the main character, how funny is that?!). I wasn't sure what to expect, but £15 for at least 4 movies I was ready to enjoy myself. So how happy I was when the organisers handed out "showbags" on the way in -- a bunch of DVDs (including a metal-cased special edition Voltron!), some badges, t-shirt transfers, little "build your own X-fighter" toys.

Even better for one attendee -- he got the "lucky" seat and ended up with a brand-new XBOX 360 and a bunch of games (all courtesy of Play.com -- thanks!).

So I was already in a merry mood when the movies started, and they turned out to be really, really funny. Take a bunch of bad, bad movies -- including the Worst Movie of All Time, "Plan 9 from Outer-space" -- and add a commentary by a couple of funny guys (actually one guy and two robots). The hours flew by, and before I knew it it was 9am!

We stumbled out of the cinema into broad daylight, squinting, dazed and confused. Whether it was the all-night laughs or the red-bull cola, I felt fine! A little bit dopey but certainly not tired, so I walked home and woke Dee (heh heh), trying to convince her to come outside and go do something!

About 5 minutes later I was asleep.

However, after 5 or 6 hours sleep I woke again, had a snack and went to see some comedians at The Comedy Pub with some friends and friends of friends (Joyce, Luke, Heather and Wayne). They were so funny too! Hard to remember the jokes; harder still to actually deliver them. After comedy we had a late dinner in China Town (I almost ordered pigeon, but settled on chilli and bean chicken).

Sunday we cleaned up the house, did the paperwork, and had a delicious dinner courtesy of Colleen (our housemate) who was really just cooking for her little brother :-).

Sunday, 5 October 2008

Painting and Belly Watching

Hey all,

Just a bit of an update. We've started painting the baby's room.. you now all know the gender, so I don't mind showing you the colours :) We've got a light blue for most of it, and then a feature wall in a nice bright green. You can see photos of the progress here. The plan is to finish it off tomorrow, on our public holiday (huzzah!).. assuming I don't sleep in until 12 like I did this morning ;)

We also took a few photos of Cheryl for the week 24 BellyWatch. You can see them here.

We've been looking around for a cot and all the trimmings for the last couple of weeks.. we thought we had found the perfect one at Toys R Us (on sale no less), but unfortunately they don't deliver as far as Morphett Vale and we had no way of getting it from the city to our place.. and the local Toys R Us doesn't have it. Ah well, back to the drawing board. Assuming we can get the painting finished this weekend all we have planned for next weekend is steam-cleaning the carpet so we should have some time to look.

My general plan is to have the room all completely finished before you guys all visit in December, so we have a bit of time still.

Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Hap to bizle



Sunday, 28 September 2008

BellyWatch: Week 22

A little something special for this BellyWatch.. check it out over at my site (you'll need the flash player)

Thursday, 25 September 2008

An evening at the theatre

Indulged our thespian hearts with a trip to Shakespeare's New Globe Theatre last night.

First: dinner at Harry's Bar in the city. Named after a famous cocktail (coquetier! eggcup!) bar in Venezia, Italia (Venice, Italy ;-)), Harry's of London shares, well, nothing with it's Italian namesake: it's a wine bar and restaurant, and the wine is Chilean, Australian and French rather than Italian. Nevertheless, the food was good: I had gnocchi (maybe Italiano!) with prawns; Dee tried the risotto (ooh, maybe it's more Italian than I gave it credit for). We ate with a friend of Dee's, her partner and two of her friends, and although we were both tired and didn't really like the idea of meeting new people just then, the night turned out okay.

Apparently Harry's in Venezia is really expensive; in London the bill was cut down to a more manageable size by a mid-week special: half price on the total bill if you have 2 courses. It was cheaper to have a main and dessert than to just have a main! Now that's a savings plan I could get into. Guess there is some good in the credit-crunch -- with all the bankers out of work, swanky places like Harry's has to let rabble like me in!

After dinner we wandered down towards the Thames and across one of the many bridges, the city beginning to sparkle as dusk mellowed to dark. Behind us, Wren's St. Paul's loomed ominously, whilst ahead the whitewashed walls and thatched roof of The Globe warmly invited us; it could've been the late 1600's, with both Globe and the great church rebuilt after the Great Fire of London. Or so I imagined.

We handed over our little cardboard tokens and shuffled up the wooden stairs to the top gallery, whereby we were afforded a near-birds-eye view down upon the stage the the players. We sat upon hard wooden benches, eschewing the hired cushions that those of less-hardy temperament (and posterior fortitude) felt necessary. Shortly the strains of a light tune played on lutes and horns signalled for quiet; a hush fell upon the crowd.

The play's the thing, you see, and the thing in this case was a jolly little tale, "The Merry Wives Of Windsor". A comedy, although I could not say whether t'were the skill of the Bard or that of the players that made it so; t'was a genuine laugh-out-loud, raucous comedy. Ooh, look thee upon these words! T'is like the particular, peculiar method of Shakespeare's own art hath soaked my brain; stewing in olde English forms of yore, it cannot help but express itself as I pen this journal!

So: perched upon hard benches (of birch or cedar) we watched a tale of clever wives, jealous husbands, bellicose doctors and rotund knights and laughed. Sooth: I could not decide whether Shakespeare so influenced English humour, or whether the comedic endeavours of Fawlty Towers and it's ilk were the influence for the players of this tale; in either case, you've not seen impotent fury until you've seen a skinny English gent in a badly-fitted wig first tempting a knight to make advances upon his wife, then cursing that she, in appearances at least, entertains such carnal ideas with said knight.


(Comments in thy best rendition of olde English please.)

Sunday, 14 September 2008

Our sunny Saturday

Damien and I decided to make the most of the nice weather on Saturday
and headed to the beach for lunch. We went to a Japanese restaurant where we had yummy food and a nice view. We then went for a little walk on the rocks. Damien went out further than me (I was afraid I'd lose my balance) and he found a seal! We finished our outing with some icecream and a bit of shopping, hehe! It was a really nice day :)

Oh yeah, and here are the ultrasound photos. The first is the baby's skull (spooky! I think it looks a bit like uncle Glenn ;) and in the second the baby is giving us a bit of a wave. The baby is doing well. I feel it moving more often and instead of quick little jabs I can feel it moving around and 'rolling' more. Sometimes it feels like it's doing little somersaults! :) And I have feeling good. I've been enjoying some long sleeps and afternoon naps, and Damien has been looking after me very well. (I have to admit though, my afternoon nap today wasn't because I was particularly tired, there was just nothing good on TV! :)

Thursday, 11 September 2008


Yesterday and today we had an excursion to the Discovery Centre. Today was an easier group but I'm worn out after trying to keep watch on 25 children. We did have eight adults for each group, but it is still tiring and no coffee! this year we had a sound show (not impressed with the presenter who knew he had kinder children and demonstrated but didn't let them join in) and the Planetarium.
Next week we'll have party and dress up days on Wednesday and Thursday so that will be two more tiring/trying days. Then it's holidays for two weeks. we may go to Coffs but not until the second week as Cheryl and Warwick will be in Brisbane until then their house was almost sold but the deal fell through so we still have a base in Coffs. Cheryl said lows of 12 and highs in the 20's at the moment. Sounds good.
All well here. I'm going to Echuca with Lisa and Carolynn on Saturday for another comp.

BellyWatch: Week 20

I'm a bit behind on the updates but here's the photo from last weekend. We bought a gorillapod tripod, so I was able to wrap it around a post out the back and solved the low-light/shakiness issues of earlier shots.

We also had the ultrasound on Monday. This was a longer one than the last, where they check the baby's organs, skeleton, that kind of thing. They didn't see anything wrong, which is good.

We also found out the baby's gender.

I've told Mum and Dad, Nana and Lisa.. Dayna, Glenn and Dee, we're happy to tell you guys but we don't want to post it here just in case you'd rather not know. You can give us a call if you'd like, or else post here and we'll tell you :)

Apart from that things have been pretty much the same. The baby is kicking with enough force that I can feel it through Cheryl's belly, which is quite exciting.. and it's about time I thought about decorating the baby's room too. I want to paint it.. but first I have to clear it ;)

Sunday, 7 September 2008

Father's day

Dad had a most enjoyable day today for Father's Day. I gave him cheese,chips and chocolate so that covered the basic food groups. His health is improving although the indigestion still occurs sometimes. His weight is going down (78kl) so he needs to get smaller size trousers and add another hole in his belt.
Nana, Lisa and the four children all came for lunch. They brought Dad some photo coasters and Lisa had put in the photos of the children. They're great. They also had a navy singlet and some ginger in his parcel. Damien and Cheryl brought muscatels and chocolate ginger when they visited, so I guess the way to Poppy's heart is through his stomach.
Dad had brought some new snooker balls that included directions so Jared, Lisa and Les all had a game or two of that. Daria eventually went to sleep and then so did Trinity so both little girls slept in the back room until five o'clock.(Daria in the cot and Trinity on the couch)
We had a great day.

Tuesday, 2 September 2008

Me too!

I'm also coming back to the land of sunshine for a spell.

Hope it's a good spell, one that brings some rain to Australia (but preferrably not when I'm there) and some sunshine to England (preferrably when I'm there).

I'll be arriving in Melbourne on the 1st December and flying out again on the 7th January. I don't get any fancy 5-star hotels or anything but my flight was relatively cheap, so I'm not complaining.

Is there anything that anyone would like me to bring specially from the UK? I plan on bringing my clothes in a carry-on bag and my backpack full of fun things (to be replaced with Aussie fun things for the trip back).

I'm not sure when I'll be where just yet - I have a lot of people I need to catch up with and a limited time to do it. But I plan on being in Bendigo for about 2 of the 4 weeks! Including Christmas. So I can catch up with everyone and do some sewing and find some well-fitting clothes. *grin* Yes, it IS that difficult to find good clothes here that I will fly all the way to Australia to get some. hehehe.

I have a lot more to talk about, but long posts are silly, so that's all from me for now.
*big hugz*
p.s. the photo is from Glenn and Chris' Manchester Adventure at Easter (oops.. it's taken me a while to upload the photos)

Monday, 1 September 2008

We're coming home after all

Today we bought our aeroplane tickets back to Australia for December-January, after a weekend of research and planning (for both the cheapest tickets, and how we were actually best going to pay for 'em).

In the end, we had a good deal from Austravel which Dee printed took into Flightcenter to see if they could beat. It was with Cathay Pacific, each leg was 11hrs and we had 6 hours in Hong Kong to see a few quick sites (e.g. giant Buddha statues).

When she got there, they couldn't match it -- the Austravel booking system was down. So Dee spoke to them on the phone and found out that the price we were quoted was for August only ... and we're one day into September! Bollocks!

Luckily, the Flightcenter people were nice and agreed to beat the "new" best Austravel price. They also looked around for some other options ... and so we're not going to Hong Kong anymore!

Instead, we're flying Korean Air via Seoul. Again, 11 hour legs (not too bad providing we can sleep). Better yet, because the flights don't connect on the way home, we're getting put up in a 5-star hotel in Seoul! We get in at night, stay at the hotel, and have until probably lunchtime to check out some of Korea.


(Cross-posted on glennji.org too)

Sunday, 31 August 2008

emails please

Dad has changed the computer to the new one he has built. Only problem is I can't find the old address book even though the old hard drive is in the new computer as well as the new hard drive. Solution is for everyone to send me an email so I can add you back as a contact. Glenn has already. It was great to talk to Glenn and Dayna this weekend. I rang Glenn but couldn't get through. When he rang five minutes later I thought he'd got my message. It turned out to be a subliminal message since he hadn't checked his actual messages but just decided it was a good time to call.
Good to know Dayna will be coming for December and has her job to continue until July next year. Also now know Glenn and Danielle are coming from the 15th December until 15th January and will be in Bendigo from Christmas afternoon and few days after, at least. Maybe we should look at a Boxing Day party. Will you still be here then Dayna? I have Friday's off so I'm wondering about a trip to Adelaide mid December, coming over on Friday, staying for the weekend then driving home on Monday.(I'd take Monday off) That way we could bring Christmas gifts and show Dayna your house. It will depend on her plans.

Go Goldfields

We won AGGREGATE at the state championships. our places were March:HM/4th, Clubs:HM/4th, Freearm:1st, Rods:1st, Aesthetics:3rd and Medley:2nd. wow after that maybe just maybe we can do it again.

Saturday, 30 August 2008

Wow I'm going to melbourne

Wow i cant belive that its CVI time already. well tommorrow i'll update the bandwagon with my places.

Monday, 25 August 2008

BellyWatch: Week 18

Just a quick update to say Cheryl is immune to pavovirus so no slap cheek for us. We thought it was pretty safe but got the blood tests anyway.
I don't know what's going on with the colour in this photo, next time i'll try to take it with less sun behind her :)

Thursday, 21 August 2008

Horsham Comp

well as you know i had my first comp on sunday. Well the seniors got runners-up aggregate and we got 3 3rds and 3 2nds i thought that was pretty good. thanks to nanny and poppy i got there on time and safely.

Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Photos from our Victoria trip - lots of Daria, because she's new and little.

Make with the clicky click

Monday, 18 August 2008

Egg-cups and make-up

The origins of the word "cocktail" are murky at best, but it's possible that it was an Anglification of the french "coquetier" (pronounced approximately "cocktay"), meaning egg-cup. Legend has it that in 1795 an apothecary and mason Antoine Peychaud mixed brandy and bitters and served it, in egg-cups, to others in the masonic temple. (Interestingly there is still a brand of bitters called Peychaud's.)

p1020670.jpgThese days, "cocktail" means any number of mixed drinks, usually with an interesting slant on presentation - the colour(s) of the drink, preparation of the glasses and/or interesting "accoutrements" like bits of fruit or little paper umbrellas. Cocktails can be alcoholic (and usually are) or "virgin" (unsullied, unaltered, without alcohol).

Our Cocktail Night started with a long day in Camden looking for costumes - specifically looking for costumes for Marilyn Manson and Emilie Autumn. Camden has such a large - and authentic! - goth following/community that I felt way out of place. Until we bought a couple of studded wrist-bands and belts, that is.


With the sun sinking oh-so-slowly in the west, we headed home for the arduous task of frocking- and making-up. Okay, not arduous - I just had to stand there whilst Dee got to work with "pancake", eyeliner, lipstick and about 3 metric ton of blue eyeshadow. (In turn, I drew the little love-heart on her cheek ... and that's about all she'd let me do!)


In the meantime, Colleen (above) had made all the food and decorated: the light-bulbs in the hallway and lounge were replaced with some pretty red ones (it's not a filter in the photos!) and there were fairy lights literally everywhere.


It was a good night, although it felt like we spent more time on the costumes than the party!

More photos, naturally.

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Barossa and art sales

Hey all,

As promised, I've put up photos from our trip to the Barossa with Yuko and Akira on Flickr - check them out yo! We managed to fit in quite a bit of Australiana for the tourists - we had meat pies for lunch, vegemite on toast, feeding kangaroos and holding koalas :) It was an action packed weekend, and we owe big thanks to Cheryl who did all the driving and drank none of the wine.

In other news, the print I have in the Rialto Exhibition has sold! It was the first one to go, and it sold midday yesterday. It cost $300, which after the cost of printing, the frame, and a small hanging fee leaves me with a very tidy $166. It's officially my first exhibition and my first sale from an exhibition all in one :)

Sunday, 10 August 2008

Update time

heya everyone i thought it was time i update the bandwagon. well they have finally started demolising the old school. i have my 1st comp on sunday the 17th and schools going well.

Wednesday, 6 August 2008

Viva la Cuba siempre ...

Not quite Spanish sunshine, but this weekend we went to the Carnaval del Pueblo (which Google Translate tells me means "carnival of the people"). It's a Latin-American festival, and was recommended by Glenda, Mark's girlfriend who lives in Barcelona. (Yes, I love the fact that one of my friends has a Spanish girlfriend ... and they met in Italia! Lot's of places to sleep on people's couches, methinks.)

But not quite Spanish sunshine (yes, I'm jealous ... pronounced "hyealous" in pseudo-Espanol fashion). In fact, so much "not quite Spanish sunshine" that we were rained out and headed to Angel for tapas and cocktails at a restaurant called "Cuba Libre" instead.

Many cocktails later we decided we were having a cocktail party! With a theme! And costumes! So in a couple of weekends we're having the inaugeral "Pop Star Cocktail Party".

But the question is: Who should I go as? (No points for saying "Moby".)

Tuesday, 5 August 2008

Google Street Views

Hey all,

Google street views are available in Australia.. which means if you haven't seen our house yet, you can see what it looked like in the heat of summer at maps.google.com.. and they've even gone so far as to do the streets of Talbot

How cool is that?

i'm going on holiday!

After days of rain and grey clouds, I'm just about to get on a bus then a plane to head to Spanish sunshine. woohoo!!

I will bring photos back and maybe send some sunshine while I'm away.

*big hugz* to everyone

Sunday, 3 August 2008

BellyWatch: Week 15

Just a quick update with a photo of Cheryl so you can all see how she's progressing.

We went to a kid's birthday party today, lots of screaming, pushing, running around.. it makes me glad we're only going to have one baby and not about 6 ranging in age from 1 - 3. It was good fun though, plus we got a lolly bag at the end: Score.

We didn't get any bags of lollies or chocolate after Cheryl's birthday but we did go out for pizza and ice-cream on Friday, and shopping on Saturday.. so all up, it's been a good weekend. We even found time to clean up the house, because next weekend Yuko and Akira from Japan are visiting Adelaide.. that should be a lot of fun, keep an eye out on flickr for the photos :)

That's all from me, we'll post another photo in a few more weeks or so i'm sure

Friday, 1 August 2008

Happy Birthday Cheryl!

Happy Birthday! I hope you think of something fun to do before tomorrow ;)

Thursday, 31 July 2008

Wednesday, 30 July 2008

Happy Birthday Mum

Happy Birthday! See you in a few weeks!

Tuesday, 29 July 2008

Where's our header gone?

I can't find it.. and I don't know the code to put it back.
Damien? Glenn? Can you put our header(s) back please?
and I don't know how to put the comments back to inline either.. not sure why it's all changed.. i didn't change it.. did someone?
mysterious and vaguely annoying.

The Cat is officially out of the Bag

Well, we've reached the end of the 13th week, meaning the first trimester, and so we've begun telling the world our news about the tiny person growing inside Cheryl. If like me you've been itching to tell someone, now it is officially okay to do so. Hooray!

Monday, 28 July 2008

A hydrocarbon- and hydroxl-fuelled weekend

Ah, back at work on a Monday morning. I'm enjoying my new job, actually - we even do things that could be considered ethical: enabling a micropayment economy in some of the poorer parts of the world, therefore boosting the economy and giving humans access to funds which they've never had before (e.g. in parts of Africa it's only something like 5% of people who have a bank account ... and we complain when they shut down our country branches!!).

Certainly better than letting rich people move their money around the world in order to let them stay rich ;-) and avoid the taxes that the rest of us poor working chumps have to pay. But enough subversive prosthelyitising! The point of this blog entry is to tell y'all what we did with our weekend - and it was all about friends, fermented grains and fossil fuels (and future fuel-cells, ahah!).

On Friday night we went to Chris's work drinks at a dingy little bar called the King's Arms in Holborn. Now, if that's where the King's soldier's spend their time, I'm surprised that Scotland didn't conquer England years ago - okay, a little unkind, it's a fun place to hang out but it's certainly shabby. Made all the more shabby-looking by Chris's entire office standing outside with pints of beer!

Strange phenomenon - when the sun comes out everybody is at a pub somewhere. And there are enough sprinkled throughout the city and surroundings, but they're always so full that people are spilling out the door, around the building, across the road in the local park. Strange, strange, strange.

So we had a couple of drinks and met a few new people Friday night. (Chris later went out clubbing with our mate Stolly, but Dee and I headed home for an early-ish night.) Saturday we caught up with another Aussie named Mark for lunch at the Union Tavern nearby. Bangers and mash for me, yum! After lunch we took Mark back home, and found Chris, Tina, Colleen and her friend Murray all having a wee party!

So many people in the back-patio area that we picked up the couch and took it out with us. Highlights: big chats about everything; more people turning up randomly; Chris bringing out a fern from his room, "because Planty was missing out"; yummy take-away Indian food (and lots of it).

On Sunday we got up early and headed to the British Motor Show (by way of Giraffe for pancakes and smoothies). So many cars! Trucks! Vans!


I walked around with Mark, a rev-head from way back. The coolest things in the first half of the building were the concept cars - with brightly glowing ninja-headlights, doors that swept up and back like wings and dashboards that looked like they belonged on the Starship Enterprise.

There were also a bunch of "green" cars - from low-emission petrol to hybrid (petrol and electric), diesel to biodiesel to other biofuel, fully electric with batteries or hydrogen fuel-cells. There were cars with recycled plastic bodies and solar panels, cars you plugged in to the wall at night, even a solar-powered bio-diesel Lotus Elise sports-car (in fetching brown-and-green forest colours).

I like seeing the electric cars, but most of them looked either a) ridiculous (square boxes on wheels, or bubbles that made the smart cars look sleek) or b) like something out of a Japanese cartoon (much better, but will they actually mass-manufacture them?).

Then it was onto the other side of the building for the petrol- and diesel-guzzling supercars -- Ferraris and Zondas and Lamboghinis and manufacturers I've never even heard of (but Mark's eyes glazed over and he drooled like Homer Simpson when he saw them). Lot's of things for going really fast - there were even a couple of motorcycles, so I was happy.

(Chris apparently sat in a Mini Cooper-D (for diesel), pretending that he really might buy one to the person minding the stand. Then when we finally caught up with him in the afternoon, he was genuinely considering it as a car to get sometime in the future! So I guess they did their job.)

Home to a barbeque (it's great, that patio!) and then we watched The Castle (classic) to try to introduce Colleen (Scottish) and Tina (English) to Australian culture. Not sure they got it :-).